Even as the traffic department is coming down hard on violators in the city with drives and fines, it seems to be lax when it comes to people participating in the safety awareness drives.
With an aim to spread awareness and safety among residents, Chandigarh traffic police organised a ‘Women Two-wheeler Safety Helmet Rally’ to mark the fourth day of the ongoing police week here on Friday.
In fact, the traffic department had even circulated a special message to all students participating in the rally, mentioning that helmets were compulsory. Despite advance warnings, many girl students from various colleges turned up at Student Centre of Panjab University (PU) to participate in the rally without helmets. They were seen driving scooters without helmets. Neither did the traffic marshals and senior police officials present at the venue fine them nor did they deny their entry.
Additional director general of police (ADGP) CSR Reddy, who was the chief guest on the occasion, flagged off the rally. Reddy reached the venue around 12.30pm against the official time, which was 11.30am.
One of the marshals on the condition of anonymity said the students were standing since morning and waiting for officials. He said the officials should be punctual and set an example in such social events to the public by coming on time.
One of the college girls, who was not wearing helmet, said no one had asked her to wear a helmet and that she had participated because her college teachers had asked her to be a part of the rally.
One of the traffic marshals said several girls driving scooters without helmets had weakened the motive of the rally as it was organised to create awareness among women.
When contacted SSP (traffic) Maneesh Chaudhry said though women were not legally bound to wear helmets, the objective was to create awareness about the importance of the safety gear. He said that they had even managed to sponsor helmets and distribute them among the drivers, but to no avail.